Welcome back to a proper Upfronts season, the moment when network TV reveals all their secret plans for the fall television season (such as it is anymore). In the wake of a destructive pandemic and in the face of the inevitable takeover of streaming, networks are playing it safer and safer: canceling fewer shows, ordering fewer comedies, and greenlighting familiar titles.
NBC is a great example of this, having ordered only three new series (so far); two of which are sequels to popular 80s titles, and the other helmed by a familiar name in the business. NBC still has a pretty lengthy list of pilots they are considering for the midseason, so stay tuned.
This post will be updated with trailers and premiere dates as they become available.
7/8 p.m.: The Voice (September 19)
9/10 p.m.: QUANTUM LEAP (September 19)
7/8 p.m.: The Voice (September 20)
8/9 p.m.: La Brea (September 27)
9/10 p.m.: New Amsterdam (September 20)
7/8 p.m.: Chicago Med (September 21)
8/9 p.m.: Chicago Fire (September 21)
9/10 p.m.: Chicago P.D. (September 21)
7/8 p.m.: Law & Order (September 22)
8/9 p.m.: Law & Order: SVU (September 22)
9/10 p.m.: Law & Order: Organized Crime (September 22)
7/8 p.m.: Capital One College Bowl (September 9)
7/8 p.m.: LOPEZ VS. LOPEZ (November 4)
7:30/8:30 p.m.: Young Rock (November 4)
8/9 p.m.: Dateline NBC
7/8 p.m.: Drama Encores
8/9 p.m.: Dateline Weekend Mystery (September 23)
9/10 p.m.: SNL Vintage (September 23)
6/7 p.m.: Football Night in America (September 8)
7:20/8:20 p.m.: NBC Sunday Night Football (September 8)
New Fall Shows
It’s been 30 years since Dr. Sam Beckett stepped into the Quantum Leap accelerator and vanished. Now a new team has been assembled to restart the project in the hopes of understanding the mysteries behind the machine and the man who created it.
T’s Take: NBC only has room on its schedule for one new drama, and it looks like they reserved it for their annual off-the-wall sci-fi concept. This year, they’re playing it relatively safe with a sequel to a beloved classic, helmed by a handsome relative newcomer. Without a trailer, it’s hard to pass judgment one way or another, honestly. But I fully expect this to be my hate-watch blog, if the past is any indication.
LOPEZ vs. Lopez
A working-class family comedy about dysfunction, reconnection and all the pain and joy in between.
T’s Take: George Lopez gives his daughter Mayan a job on a TV show.
Unapologetic optimist judge Abby Stone, the daughter of the late Harry Stone, follows in her father’s footsteps as she presides over the night shift of a Manhattan arraignment court and tries to bring order to its crew of oddballs and cynics, most notably former night court prosecutor Dan Fielding.
T’s Take: I’m not mad at a sequel to Night Court, which was a delightful sitcom back in the day. This seems like a sweet idea; I just wish most of the cast were still alive to participate.
MILLION DOLLAR ISLAND
A high-stakes social experiment in which 100 contestants must forge friendships and build alliances as they plot to stay on a remote desert island for up to 50 days and compete to win their share of the ultimate $1 million prize. Upon arrival each contestant is given a bracelet worth $10,000. During their time on the island, contestants gain and lose bracelets through various challenges, but when a player leaves the island, they must choose who will receive their portion of the money. In this intense competition, the strength of your personal bonds are just as important as being the ultimate player.
So, Survivor, but with bracelets?
DOLLY PARTON’S MOUNTAIN MAGIC CHRISTMAS
A modern-day movie musical about the making of a network TV special, “Dolly Parton’s Mountain Magic Christmas” is the frenetic backstage story and delightful on-camera results of Dolly’s desire to uplift an exhausted world’s spirits by sharing the unique “mountain magic” she has always found in and around Dollywood at Christmas. Throughout the movie’s production numbers and rehearsal chaos, Dolly finds herself taking a private journey into her past, guided by the mysterious appearances of her personal Three Wise Men. When it’s time for her big special to air live, a renewed and inspired Dolly goes rogue and shows the world that the real magic of Christmas lies in the hearts of the children we all once were, the realization that Christmas is about the people we share it with, and how her faith remains the common thread between Christmases past, present, and future.
T’s Take: Dolly can do whatever she wants.
Additionally, three series that were ordered last year are expected to be on the schedule sometime this year, possibly in the summer:
LA FIRE AND RESCUE
Official synopsis: In this new docuseries, Dick Wolf, Universal Television Alternative Studio and 44 Blue Productions have gained unprecedented access within The Los Angeles County Fire Department. The LACoFD is responsible for protecting the lives and property of 4 million residents living in 59 cities across Los Angeles County. From helicopter mountain rescues, lifeguard beach SOS, fireboats, hazmat units, to California’s raging wildfires… they do it all. These fire fighters are true everyday heroes and their compelling stories will be told alongside the heart-pounding action of unpredictable and dangerous circumstances as they face the front lines of life and death.
T’s Take: Dick Wolf, but do it reality style.
Official synopsis: The series will put viewers into a spin each week as celebrity guests attempt to help contestants win big. Full of edge-of-your seat jeopardy, plenty of laughs, huge stars and a spectacular 42-foot-wide spinning wheel make for one of the most exciting, and unorthodox, game shows to come around in a long time.
T’s Take: ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
Who do you think you are?
Official synopsis: Who Do You Think You Are? returns with new journeys of self-discovery, connection and diversity. A new group of celebrities will set sail on their mission to connect with their family history.
T’s Take: This show has been around for 10 seasons now, you know what this is.
Update on July 21, 2022:
In any given year, more than 600,000 people are reported missing in the U.S. More than half that number are people of color that the country seems to forget about. A public relations specialist — who was once herself one of those forgotten ones — and her crisis management team now make sure there is always someone looking out for the forgotten missing people. But unbeknownst to anyone, this everyday hero is hiding a chilling secret of her own.
- The Endgame
- Mr. Mayor
- Ordinary Joe
- This Is Us
- American Auto
- The Blacklist
- Chicago Fire
- Chicago Med
- Chicago P.D.
- Grand Crew
- La Brea
- Law & Order
- Law & Order: Organized Crime
- Law & Order: Special Victims Unit
- New Amsterdam
- That’s My Jam
- The Voice
- The Wall
- Young Rock
Still Up in the Air
- Making It
- Family Game Fight
- AGT: Extreme
Pilots Still Up in the Air
Update July 21, 2022
Not going forward
Special Agent Alexander McCoy is a legend in law enforcement, the agent we all hope is out there, the agent we’d all like to be. The only issue is … he doesn’t actually exist. He’s a ghost, a phantom. So what happens when a man claiming to be Alexander McCoy walks through the door with all of his skills and knowledge, but with an agenda nobody will see coming.
Unbroken Official synopsis: Three dynastic ranch families on the central coast of California make love and war in a passionate struggle to survive, ultimately setting the stage for a group of fiercely determined young women to win big for all at the National Championship of Rodeo.
Still being considered:
A world-renowned professor of behavioral science lends his expertise to an array of high-stakes cases involving governments, law enforcement, and corporations with his unique and unexpected approach to understanding human behavior. Based on Dan Ariely’s book Predictably Irrational
untitled drama from Mike Daniels
Based on the Dutch series A’dam – E.V.A., the drama chronicles the love and lives of two complete strangers whose multiple run-ins begin to defy coincidence and lead both to believe in fate. Pairs a serialized, stand-up-and-cheer romantic comedy with the wildly diverse and often unexpected human stories of anyone who finds themselves six degrees from Adam and Eva.